As the music fades and the turntable of life on this earth comes to a stop, it is with great sadness that we announce the passing of William H. "Bill" Payne. Bill passed from this life on November 20, 2015 in Tulsa surrounded by his loving family. Services have been entrusted to the care of Palmer Marler Funeral Home of Perry. A graveside service will be held at 2pm on Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at Grace Hill Cemetery in Perry. A memorial service celebrating Bill’s life will be held at 2 pm on Tuesday, December 1st at St. Stephen's United Methodist Church in Broken Arrow, OK.
William Haydon Payne was born on July 3, 1939 in Washington, D.C. to William Howard and Lorena (Haydon) Payne. He graduated from Edmond High School and went on to attend Central State University before transferring to Oklahoma City University where he graduated with a degree in electronic engineering. While at Central State, Bill met the love of his life, Gail Curtis in the university’s library and in July of 1960 they were married at the Methodist Church in Lucien, OK. Bill and Gail enjoyed 55 amazing years of marriage and had four wonderful children: Anne, Kelly, Haydon, and Will.
A Broadcaster’s Broadcaster, Bill spent over 60 years in radio broadcasting, which began in Cushing, OK at the age of 12. In 1962 Bill’s first station KWHP was one of three FM Stations on the air in Oklahoma. Bill would go on to own radio stations in Edmond, Tulsa, Muskogee, Tahlequah, Eufaula, Hugo, Stuart, Antlers, and Kiowa. Besides being a radio broadcasting pioneer, he also spent 12 years as the Executive Director of the International Broadcasters Idea Bank. Over the course of his career, Bill Payne was inducted into the Oklahoma Broadcasters Hall of Fame and the Country Radio Hall of Fame.
Bill’s commitment to the communities he served was clear and he used his stations to raise countless dollars for numerous charities and worthwhile causes. He served in Edmond Jaycees, Tahlequah and Muskogee Rotary, local Masonic Lodge and as president for the Edmond Kiwanis Club and Hugo Lions Club. He also served as the worship leader and lay servant for the Cookson United Methodist Church. Bill was a licensed pilot and avid Oklahoma Sooner fan.
He was preceded in death by his parents William Howard and Lorena Payne and a sister Jo Anne Brown.
Bill is survived by his wife Gail of the home. Four children: Will Payne and wife Brandi of Antlers; Anne McGarry and husband Scott of Pagosa Springs, CO; Kelly Payne of Bethany; Haydon Ishmael and husband Todd of Broken Arrow; Grandchildren: Josh Lindholm, Chris Lindholm, Taylor McGarry and wife Lorryn, Mitch McGarry, Jesseca Moore and husband Ryan, Jarred Payne, McKinley Payne, Hayes Payne, Madysen Ishmael, Jewele Ishmael, and William Ishmael. Great grandchildren: Gianna and Liam McGarry, Keegan, Ivy, Hailey, and Piper Lindholm. Bill is also survived by countless employees and friends.
For more information on the life of William H. “Bill” Payne please go to www.payneradiogroup.com . The family requests that donations be made in Bill’s name to the Cookson United Methodist Church or the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters’ Scholarship Fund in care of Palmer Marler Funeral Home 203 Fir Street, Perry, OK 73077.